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Trade fairs & events as easy to realize as online marketing

Press release from 02.09.2013

The amounts German companies invest annually in online advertising are rising steadily. From 2009 to today, spending on online advertising has almost doubled. Expenditure on search term marketing alone is forecast at EUR 2.5 billion in 2013, compared with around EUR 1.6 billion in 2009.

If you consider the simple handling of an ad placement via Google AdWords and the fact that the success or failure of a campaign can be tracked with an extremely high degree of transparency, you have already found two good reasons why companies are bravely turning to this marketing tool.

However, the advantages of an AdWords ad are offset by rising click prices for coveted keywords. If you put the cost of online advertising in relation to the cost of a personal contact, for example, you get surprising results.

The cost of an online lead is higher than the cost of a lead obtained at a trade show or event. This finding is the result of a study conducted by WWM GmbH & Co. KG. Here, over a period of one year, the leads generated were classified (online, print, trade show, etc.) and the respective contact costs were determined so that a comparison of the various channels was possible. Due to the relatively limited basic population and the industry specification, the results are not representative, but they do give reason to put the various marketing instruments to the test: What does the lead obtained online actually bring to the company? It is probably self-evident that the quality of contact during a personal conversation with the customer is higher than a click on a website. Apart from web store providers, companies tend to benefit more from real contact. If the efficiency - i.e. the cost per contact - also speaks against the online lead, one has to ask what is holding companies back from giving personal communication with customers and business partners more weight in the marketing mix again.

Based on experience, various problems can be defined that prove to be "trade show stoppers" in practice. These problems are exclusively related to the organization and handling of events. Both internally and externally, there are many procedures and processes that are difficult to standardize and therefore require a great deal of planning and coordination for each event. If personal contact with the customer is of higher quality for companies than a lead generated online, then the corresponding event management should be as easy to implement as a Google Adwords ad.

In practice, this is why a web-based event management solution is the best solution. All processes relating to the planning, organization and execution of trade fairs and events can be coordinated via an online portal. Web-based event management - or event resource management (ERM) - becomes an integrated model by linking the portal solution with a comprehensive range of real services such as logistics, graphics production or insurance. This allows companies to outsource the processes associated with event organization as needed. Especially companies that want to realize a large number of smaller events benefit from such a solution. Ideally, the online portal should be customized for this purpose and include all company-wide resources for events - from trade fair counters to advertising materials. Under this condition, every authorized user can then view all inventories in real time, as well as compile required event materials themselves with just a few clicks. With the help of integrated event resource management, the many individual processes involved in organizing an event can be standardized.

The targeted outsourcing of standardized processes drastically reduces the scope and complexity of the tasks associated with small trade fairs and events. The bottom line is that an event can then actually be realized as easily and cost-transparently as a Google AdWords ad - with the advantage that companies generate personal contacts instead of online leads.
Source: C'Mag, September 2013